US media is further reporting on comments made Thursday by Global Muslim Brotherhood leader Youssef Qaradawi in which he denied Israel’s right to exist and waxed enthusiastically about Hamas rocket fire into Israel. According to an AP report:
Associated Press May 9, 2013 prominent Islamic scholar making a landmark visit to the Gaza Strip declared Thursday that Israel has no right to exist and voiced his support for rocket fire on Israel, giving a boost of legitimacy to the militant Islamist Hamas rulers of the Palestinian territory. Yusuf al-Qaradawi is the latest of a few high profile figures visit Gaza, boosting the Hamas effort to break its international isolation. The U.S., EU and Israel brand Hamas a terror group, while the rival Fatah, which rules in the West Bank, enjoys Western backing. Al-Qaradawi issued the strongest anti-Israel declarations of any of the visitors to date. ‘This land has never once been a Jewish land. Palestine is for the Arab Islamic nation,’ said al-Qaradawi, a Qatar-based cleric made famous by his popular TV show and widely respected in the Muslim world. ‘The rockets made in Gaza are more powerful than the (Israeli) occupation’s rockets,’ he added…….
Al-Qaradawi arrived in Gaza late Wednesday to an enthusiastic welcome by Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh and his Cabinet ministers. They hosted the cleric Thursday in a tent set up on the site of the prime minister’s office, which Israeli warplanes demolished in 2009.
A post from yesterday reported that Qaradawi had arrived in Gaza where he was greeted by the Hamas Prime Minister and called immediately for “Jihad to death” against Israel.
Youssef Qaradawi is the most important leader of the Global Muslim Brotherhood and is the de facto spiritual leader of the movement. He is also considered to be the “spiritual guide” for Hamas and his fatwas in support of suicide bombings against Israeli citizens were utilized by Hamas to justify their operations. In 2004, Qaradawi turned down the offer to head he Egyptian Brotherhood after the death of the Supreme Guide. He is based in Qatar and has said the Qatari Emir has protected from being designated as a terrorist by the U.S. He has also reportedly amassed substantial wealth by serving as the Shari’ah adviser to many important Islamic banks and funds. Qaradawi been banned from entering the US since 1999 and UK since 2008. Last year, authorities also refused him entry into France. Qaradawi has made frequent extremist statements including:
- Predicting that Islam will conquer Europe through peaceful means.
- Calling Hitler a divine punishment for the “misdeeds of the Jews” and that the Holocaust was exaggerated.
- Saying that he wants to end his life “in the service of Jihad” by visiting Israel and throwing a bomb, becoming a “martyr” in the process
- Calling for the death of all Jews.
- Calling for the collapse of the US if it doesn’t end its “unjust ways.”